At the annual iPhone event on September 12, 2018, Apple added two new high-end models to iPhone X family – iPhone XS and iPhone XS Max along with an affordable iPhone XR. With this announcement, Apple has revamped the entire portfolio of iPhone X series. The idea is to gradually discontinue iPhone X, iPhone 8S and iPhone 8S Plus.

With all-new camera technology, faster processor and latest iOS, iPhone XS is indeed the flagship Apple phone of the year. Leaving the Plus nomenclature aside, iPhone XS Max is basically the combination of a phone with all top-notch features of iPhone XS and a bigger display. That also places Apple’s biggest iPhone at the peak of the list titled as ‘the most expensive phone model among the regular handsets’.

“iPhone Xs is not one, but two new iPhone models and iPhone Xs Max offers the biggest display ever in an iPhone with the biggest battery ever in an iPhone,” said Philip Schiller, Senior Vice President of Worldwide Marketing, Apple.

Apple iPhone XS Max Review

Featuring the best and biggest displays ever in an iPhone. Source: Apple

iPhone XS Max Review: Structure


The iPhone XS Max is so big that the owner won’t be able to use it with one hand. Its dimensions are 6.20 inches (H) x 3.05 inches (W) x 0.30 inches (D). It is the biggest all-screen iPhone with OLED measuring 6.5-inches. This puts it quite close to Samsung’s 2018 flagship phone, 6.4-inch Galaxy Note9 measuring 6.37 inches (H) x 3.01 inches (W) x 0.35 inches (D).

On the weighing scale, iPhone XS Max with 208 grams is technically heavier than the Samsung model which is about 202 grams. However, Apple’s phone feels light on the palms than the competitive device.

iPhone XS Max Built

iPhone XS Max huge mechanism is configured between two glass slabs which are then fixed together by a high-grade sturdy stainless steel frame.

Though Apple assured that it has used above industry-best glass material, the new big iPhone demands special encasing to protect it from accidental breakage. The Cupertino giant has also released special silicon and leather cases available in various shades for a price starting from $39. Plus, the Leather Folio for iPhone XS and iPhone XS Max is priced $99.

iPhone XS Max Review: Display

The OLED panel on the iPhone XS Max has a resolution of 2688 x 1242 pixels at 458 PPI. It also features Super Retina multi-touch HD display with a contrast ratio of 1000000:1.

Similar to iPhone XS, the display of the XS Max is rated at IP68. That means that it is water-proof if submerged in 2 meters deep water for two hours. The screen is also resistant to other beverages including salt water, orange juice, and even beer.

iPhone XS Max review Apple

Phil Schiller introduces iPhone XS and iPhone XS Max, the most advanced iPhones ever. Source: Apple

Further, the Dolby Vision, True Tone display, wide color management, and 3D Touch technology embedded in the biggest iPhone provide excellent brightness, true black tones, and premium picture quality.

All these upgrades come with an improved sound system. The new iPhone XS Max received wider stereo playback for greater sound clarity.

So you may feel it is quite difficult to handle iPhone XS Max, the big OLED screen, A12 Bionic chip, Neural Engine and 4-core GPU will facilitate to enjoy movies, video editing and immersive gameplay to the fullest.

Battery Life

In addition, the battery of iPhone XS Max runs 90 minutes longer than the parent iPhone X. It offers talk time up to 25 hours, wireless video playback for 15 hours and internet usage up to 13 hours. The new iPhone X series has also got super-fast charging capacity, that is, the iPhone XS and XS Max load up to 50 percent battery within 30 minutes.

iPhone XS Max Review: Camera

As mentioned earlier, iPhone XS Max is a stretched version of iPhone XS with select additional features, both the iPhone models boast similar camera capabilities, dual SIM support, advanced facial recognition, iOS 12 and fresh augmented reality experiences.

There are twin 12MP lens at the rear side with pixel size 1.4µm on the wide-angle and telephoto camera setup. The new iPhone offers 2x optical zoom with dual optical image stabilization. At the front side, there lies a 7MP TrueDepth camera for an improved Face ID technology.

The iPhone XS Max camera facilitates stereo recording 4K videos at 24 frames per second (fps), 30 fps and 60 fps. Moreover, it can also capture 8MP still shots while shooting 4K videos.

iPhone XS Max Review: LTE Performance

Yesterday, SpeedSmart, a service which tests the speed of wireless connections, tweeted results of LTE speeds on the iPhone XS and iPhone XS Max in comparison to iPhone X. The tests were done across the three main US carriers – AT&T, T-Mobile and Verizon.

iPhone XS Max review carrier

The iPhone XS series has a super advantage on iPhone X in terms of LTE performance. Source: SmartSpeed

From the chart, it is evident that the latest iPhone XS series has a massive advantage on its predecessor iPhone X model. This is because the Apple XS models have 4×4 MIMO antenna installed inside their bodies. This configuration supports better modem connectivity and other radio technologies like QAM and LAA, ultimately leading to boosted reception.

On the other side, this component is already available in the various Android flagship phones for quite a long time.

iPhone XS Max Price

Apple has started taking pre-orders for the iPhone XS Max from September 14th, 2018. The device is slated to come to the market on September 21.

iPhone XS Max is available in three configurations – 64GB, 256GB and 512GB and in three color options – Gold, Space Grey and Silver.

The starting price of the Apple’s biggest phone is $1,099 and the one with the highest storage space is priced at $1,449.

iPhone XS Max Review

A12 Bionic unlocks new experiences for AR, games, photography, video editing, graphics-intensive apps and more. Source: Apple

Technowize Verdict

The iPhone XS Max is an apt upgrade device for the fans of iPhone Plus range. The gamers and artists whose basic needs include a bigger landscape and extended battery life are also the target markets for this new phone.

However, the biggest hindrance to own the Apple’s giant phone is its price range. In that case, one can go ahead with its younger brother, iPhone XS featuring similar capabilities and faster performance.